AFC Notes: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Patriots

     

Bills

  • According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, the 49ers were interested in QB Mitchell Trubisky, but when his market didn’t develop how he expected he decided to take a backup job with the Bills and hope to reset his value in a year.
  • Fowler says Buffalo is still in the market for a backup swing tackle. He adds they were intrigued in potentially adding a big-name tight end like Rob Gronkowski or Zach Ertz but settled for Jacob Hollister on a cheap contract
  • Bills DE Mario Addison‘s contract will void in 2022 as a part of his restructure, making him a free agent after this season. Addison has a $4.075 million base salary, $3.25 million of which is guaranteed, and a $1.9 million roster bonus. (Matthew Fairburn)
  • Buffalo’s restructure for DT Vernon Butler created just $500,000 of cap space, as he still counts for $5.3 million in 2021. (Fairburn)
  • Bills WR Isaiah McKenzie‘s one-year deal is worth a total of $1.15 million of which $350,000 is fully guaranteed. (Ian Rapoport)
  • Boston College LB Isaiah McDuffie has had a virtual meeting with the Bills. (Justin Melo)

Dolphins

  • Dolphins’ new WR Will Fuller said his six-game suspension last season for a PED violation was a “completely accidental” situation: “It was a one-time thing, completely accidental. That is never going to happen again.” (Aaron Wilson)
  • According to Over The Cap, the Dolphins will need to save $9,399,516 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.

Jets

  • According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, the Titans and Jets were involved in the bidding for TE Jonnu Smith and drove the price up a bit for New England. 
  • Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer writes that he thinks due to certain logistics the choice for the Jets essentially boils down to going all-in on QB Sam Darnold for the next two years or drafting another quarterback with the No. 2 pick. 
  • Breer explains the Jets need to make a decision on Darnold’s fifth-year option in May, which will fully guarantee him $18.858 million in 2022. That likely locks him in as the starter and at the very least is a sizable chunk of dead money if they move on.
  • He adds there’s not a guarantee the Jets would have a good shot of finding another quarterback in 2022, as it’s currently viewed as a weak class. Bottom line, Breer doesn’t think Darnold has shown enough for the Jets to bet on him like that, even if there’s still hope for his NFL future. 
  • According to Over The Cap, the Jets will need to save $9,405,679 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.

Patriots

New Patriots TE Hunter Henry said he was as surprised as anyone when New England was still interested in signing him despite forking over a huge sum to TE Jonnu Smith the day before. The Patriots’ vision for both of them in the offense, as well as a nearly identical average annual salary to Smith, won him over. 

“It just kind of happened,” Henry said via USA Today’s Henry McKenna. “I didn’t think this would happen. . . . We can complement each other in a cool way. Obviously, the Patriots have a lot of success with tight ends, and I’m just excited to hopefully add to that.”

  • According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, the Titans and Jets were involved in the bidding for Smith and drove the price up a bit for New England. 
  • Fowler adds the Patriots had to fend off four to six other teams for OLB Matt Judon.
  • Patriots OT Trent Brown‘s one-year, $11 million deal includes a $6.5 million fully guaranteed base salary, up to $2 million in per-game bonuses, a $500,000 weight incentive, $1 million in playing-time incentives, and another $1 million by reaching the Pro Bowl. (Field Yates)
  • Brown said the organization wants him to stay “under 380 pounds” for the 2021 season. He has a $500,000 incentive in his contract for that. (Doug Kyed)
  • Brown commented that he did not enjoy his time with the Raiders and feels Las Vegas “wasn’t a good fit” for him: “Ever since I left, nothing has gone right for me…I wasn’t really feeling the place of work. No hard feelings to them. Just wasn’t a good fit.” (Michael Giardi)
  • Patriots’ new WR Nelson Agholor said he’s already spoken to Cam Newton and looks forward to working with him: “Cam Newton is a great quarterback. He’s a league MVP (2015) for a reason. I know he can do whatever needs to be done.” (Mike Reiss)
  • In his Patriots DE Kyle Van Noy‘s introductory press conference after returning to New England, Van Noy refused to comment on his relationship with Dolphins HC Brian Flores in his one season in Miami: “Yeah, no comment.” (Doug Kyed)
  • In the end, Van Noy is happy to be back with the Patriots: “Happy to be back with my brothers.” (Mike Reiss)
  • Van Noy indicated that the Patriots were among a “couple of teams” who showed interest in him shortly after being released from the Dolphins. (Jeff Howe)

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